Tracy Morgan recovering after surgery following serious crash
By Bruce Shipkowski, AP
June 10, 2014, 3:39 pm TWN
Tracy Morgan was recovering Sunday, but was expected to remain hospitalized for several weeks after having surgery on a broken leg suffered in a deadly chain-reaction crash on the New Jersey Turnpike that left the actor-comedian and two others critically injured and another man dead.
The 45-year-old Morgan, a former "Saturday Night Live" and "30 Rock" cast member, remained in critical condition but was "more responsive" Sunday after having surgery for a broken leg, said his spokesman Lewis Kay.
Kay said that Morgan, who was airlifted to the hospital, also sustained a broken femur, broken nose and several broken ribs and is expected to remain hospitalized for "several weeks." He said that Morgan's family is "tremendously overwhelmed and appreciative of the outpouring of love and support from his fans."
A Wal-Mart truck driver from Georgia was charged with death by auto and four counts of assault by auto. Authorities said 35-year-old Kevin Roper, of Jonesboro, apparently failed to slow for traffic ahead early Saturday in Cranbury Township and swerved at the last minute to avoid a crash. Instead, his big rig smashed into the back of Morgan's chauffeured Mercedes limo bus, killing comedian James "Jimmy Mack" McNair, authorities said.
Also critically injured were Morgan's assistant, Jeffrey Millea, 36, of Shelton, Connecticut, and comedian Ardie Fuqua Jr., 43, of Jersey City, said Zenaida Mendez, a spokeswoman for Robert Wood Johnson Hospital in New Brunswick. Another passenger, comic Harris Stanton, was treated and released.
Tyrone Gale, who was driving the limo bus, told ABC News that he was disoriented after the vehicle flipped over and could hear Morgan yelling for help.
"I climbed around and heard Tracy screaming for help," said Gale. "I climbed up on the body of the limo bus ... but I couldn't reach them."
Roper, accompanied by his attorney, turned himself in to state police. He was released on US$50,000 bail Saturday night and has been placed on administrative leave, Wal-Mart spokesman David Tovar said Sunday.
Wal-Mart President Bill Simon said in a statement that the company "will take full responsibility" if authorities determine its truck caused the accident.